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  • Chris McMillan

Inspiring more people with disabilities to create better lives

5th September 2021

Inspiring more people with disabilities to create better lives

"Our goal is to compete safely, show good spirit, strive for success and promote friendship," said Zhang Haidi, president of Rehabilitation International, chairperson of the China Disabled Persons' Federation and China's chef de mission at the 2020 Tokyo Paralympics, at the launch of the Chinese squad for Tokyo 2020.

The Paralympic Games, the world's largest competition for athletes with disabilities, came after a year-long postponement due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Zhang said the Paralympic Games were held amid the pandemic, when the spirit of the Paralympians to face challenges and fight hard demonstrated their love for life, the courage to overcome difficulties, the indomitable will and optimistic lifestyle, which will inspire more people with disabilities to create better lives.

The Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games kicked off on Aug. 24, 2021, in a near-empty stadium without spectators amid the pandemic. Andrew Parsons, president of the International Paralympic Committee, told athletes during the opening ceremony that they were "the best of humanity."

"In bringing together thousands of athletes from all over the world for a safe and secure Games, we are celebrating humanity, showcasing the strength and diversity of the human spirit, and highlighting that out of adversity must always come hope," Parsons said.

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